Mobile app tests urine for 25 conditions
A new smartphone app could allow you to test your own urine for indications of as many as 25 medical conditions. Called Uchek, the app, unveiled this week at the TED (Technology, Education, Design) conference in Los Angeles, can test for 10 different elements including glucose, proteins and nitrates. The presence and levels of those elements allow the app to detect diseases such as diabetes, urinary tract infections, liver problems and cancer.
The testing process works much like a home pregnancy test or blood glucose monitor. Users dip a standard test strip into their collected urine, then place it on a specialized mat, which is supplied with the app. The mat normalizes the colors on the stick and a person uses their smartphone to take a picture. The app analyzes the photo and identifies which, if any, conditions are indicated by the colors.
The app’s designer, Myshkin Ingawale, hopes that the mobility and relatively low cost of the app ($20) will give people in the developing world easier access to medical diagnostics and treatment. The app will be available for individual use from Apple’s app store as soon as late March, and will be tested on a larger scale at the King Edward Hospital in Mumbai, India.